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Negative Keywords in Pay Per Click Advertising (PPC)

Blog | March 19, 2020 |

The selection of right keywords can determine the success of any campaign and hence, Keyword Research is most critical when it comes to advertising your brand through Adwords and PPC.

PPC can be an expensive practice however, it has a tremendous potential to become your valuable marketing channel. To make the most out of your PPC campaigns, you’ll need to keep modifying your ads with the help of data and some of your intelligence. Sometimes, your campaigns are shown to and clicked by an audience that is irrelevant to your product/services and you keep paying for them regardless of any benefit. Here, the concept of negative keywords come into existence. 

Negative keywords are those keywords that prevent your PPC ad campaigns from getting ineffective clicks from an irrelevant audience and can help you save your budget instead of just burning your hard-earned money. 

To get your ad campaign rid of wasted clicks and target your specific buyer persona, you can perform A/B testing on your ads, assess the quality score, adding callout extensions and revisiting your keywords. So, in order to get your ad campaigns strong, the usage of negative keywords becomes important. 

What are the Negative Keywords?

For an ad campaign, you need to assign some specific types of search terms where you want your ads to appear. Focusing on the right and relevant keywords for the target audience is also important. So, Negative Keywords are those that are totally opposite from your target keywords. They indicate to search engines those search terms for which they don’t want to appear.

Why use Negative Keywords?

There are many benefits that Negative Keywords can generate for an advertiser and can remarkably improve the results of a PPC Campaign. By adding a list of Negative Keywords, the CTR of your ad campaign can grow significantly, hence, improving its performance. Negative keywords can improve Quality Score, conversions and CTR by subduing impressions from irrelevant search queries and reducing the unwanted clicks from an ineffective audience.

When to use Negative Keywords?

A negative match means that your ad won’t appear for a word or phrase that you’ve used in your list of Negative Keywords. For example, let’s say you make ‘chocolate cake’ and for this, there could be two different user intent for the search query i.e. bakery and recipes. In such a case, you can either of the two: bakery or recipes to your list of Negative Keywords.

How to find Negative Keywords?

You can begin to find Negative Keywords by brainstorming using the data on search terms of your ad campaigns and the knowledge of your own industry. You can do a manual search by searching a few keywords and analyzing the results that show up. You can also use Google to suggest. While making the manual searches, Google suggests some phrases as well. These are ‘potential negative keywords’. Another way is to use some tools for your keyword research like the Keyword Planner in AdWords and SEMrush.

Where to enter Negative Keywords?

Right next to the ‘Keywords’ tab, is the tab for negative keywords that you might have noticed while setting up your ad campaign. Either you can define them for some specific ad groups or can use them at the Campaign level depending upon the complexity of the campaign.

Types of Negative Keywords

  • Negative Broad Match: To add this type to your PPC campaign just insert a minus(-) sign before a keyword. For example -Home Services, now for this keyword type, your ad won’t appear and will be prevented from showing on search queries having the terms Home and Services in their sequence.
  • Negative Phrase Match: For this type, you need to add quotation marks on your keywords. For example “Home Services”, for this keyword type, your ad won’t appear for any search query containing the phrase ‘Home Services’.
  • Negative Exact Match: For this type, simply insert brackets around your keywords. For example [Home Services], for this keyword type, your ad won’t appear search queries containing the words Home and Services together.

In this ever-changing digital world, you must keep a check on your Ad campaigns and negative keywords regularly. Search engine’s algorithms changes, competitors alter their strategies, different search terms evolve and the data keeps changing. Hence, to cope up with this change, you need to change your tactics and start employing negative keywords in your campaigns and don’t miss out on any opportunity to maximize your profit.

To know more about or to avail Google AdWords and PPC services and to get most out of them, get in touch with our team of professionals at Ambiente Technologies.


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